It’s all a matter of story. Humankind is in trouble right now because we don’t have a good story. — Thomas Berry The transformations of culture do not take place in history. They take place in myth. It is because the individual cannot perceive in the limits of his own lifetime such transformations as the Neolithic or Industrial revolutions that we have need of myth. A model, a hypothesis or a myth is a way of rendering the invisible. Because the unconscious is outside of time, it can perceive transformations beyond the limits of the ego. These unconscious perceptions are expressed in art or mythologies. We ourselves are living in an age of cultural transformation, but if you went to the experts to ask for a description, they could tell you nothing. You have to go to those who are at home in the unconscious and the superconscious, the artists and prophets; through myth and symbol in art, science ﬁction or religion, they will describe the present by speaking about the future.
— William Irwin Thompson It’s important to encourage artists to use their creativity to address the issues of the world today. They obviously have an important role to play because of their creative spirit, their way of communicating and seeing the world. They often look outside the box. They touch our heart, and sometimes touch our heart before our mind! Their compassion is essential.
— Kofi Annan The new age of education is programmed for discovery rather than instruction. Art as radar environment, distant early warning system: the antennae of the race. Suppose for a moment that the Western world has been hugely fragmented and splintered in its consciousness and its individualism for many centuries. And that under electric conditions it now is being integrated and merged together again at a very fast clip. The question for us is, all right, if this is happening, what is a valid human strategy for conduct? Should we resist it and detach ourselves? Should we involve ourselves?... As far as the artist can clarify issues in this way, he is doing very important work.
— Marshall McLuhan We must think of art and its production (creation) as a social project, and not as local and circumstantial praxis that varies with momentary events. We need to shift from a vision of utilitarian activity towards a symbolic function that is useful for and in society. We must think of art, in culture, as an activity in which every human being, that is to say social being, can distance, can question, can re-examine the rules, forms, and norms in order to explore and confront his own representations of the world. To propose art as a means to examine the world order, and thus as a tool for emancipation, autonomy, for individual and collective responsibility. A realm and project of democracy.
— Michel Simmonot The (work of art) becomes a document on the fragmentary state of the vision of a certain moment of history. The work reveals man’s conception of his situation in the world at a certain stage of evolution of his species and in function of the information received about his status in the universe. Each time a fresh piece of information questions the reigning deﬁnition, man gains a new awareness of his relationship with the world —and the artist within the pictorial space represents a new visual system which explains it. At this moment emerges the deconstruction of the former system, and the setting up of a new scheme.
— Réalités magazine I write these words against a background of seemingly ungovernable crisis. It’s the Age of the Apocalypse, for no-one any longer can say whether humanity will survive. The world’s leading scientists in the relevant ﬁelds seem agreed about this: we’ve created for ourselves as set of... crises, which may prove impossible to contain... Repeatedly, we attack dysfunctions in our social organisation while the symptoms continue to worsen... I submit that what causes the helpless feeling is the inadequacy of old forms of thought to cope with an historically unprecedented situation. We can’t even think of solutions without correctly recognising the problem, and it’s now commonplace to pose our problems incorrectly. We tend to focus on what’s seen rather than on our way of seeing... Instead of focusing on how we produce and consume, we must focus on how we perceive and on how we communicate.
— Gene Youngblood.